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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
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Dose a carer or the caring agency they work for, have to

Customer Question

Dose a carer or the caring agency they work for, have to have liability insurance- incase they break something in your home?
Submitted: 10 months ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 10 months ago.

Hello, my name is***** am a qualified lawyer and I will be assisting you with your question today.

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 10 months ago.

Please can you provide some background information on the issue/incident so that I can advise. Thank you

Customer: replied 10 months ago.
My son, age 21, has a caring agency contracted from the nhs, to help with his daily needs. His bedroom joins to our living room. Carers who should be with my son managed to break an inexpensive orniment. The agency are saying they do not have liability insurance, we can not afford home insurance. The carers were unaware that there was no insurance.
Over the corse of the past year I have a full a sheet of paper full of damages caused by carers in my home, and nobody wants to take responsibility for any of this.
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
Posted by JustAnswer at customer's request) Hello. I would like to request the following Expert Service(s) from you: Live Phone Call. Let me know if you need more information, or send me the service offer(s) so we can proceed.
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 10 months ago.

OK thank you. Thank you also for the live phone call request. I am unable to talk at the moment as I am in court today but please leave it with me; I will prepare my advice during the day and get back to you at the earliest opportunity. There is no need to wait here as you will receive an email when I have responded. Thank you.

Customer: replied 10 months ago.
Thank you for you response,
Between looking after my terminally ill son, and my youngest autistic son,
I am also self employed. Wednesday we have carers in so I will be at work.
My next avalible day will be Thursday. However we have just pulled the youngest out of school.at present he is being taught from home.
I can not guarantee what time of day I will be avalible. Please be persistent in trying,
Thank you
***** *****
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 10 months ago.

Many thanks for your patience. Generally it would be the agency that would require to have insurance in place if they employ carers and supply them to their clients. If you had employed the carer directly then they would have been responsible for their own insurance. A good summary of the obligations of each party can be found here:

http://www.youretheboss.org.uk/news/2013/07/22/what-insurance-do-you-need-for-hiring-or-working-as-a-paid-carer/27

In the circumstances you can hold the agency liable for the damage because they would likely have what is called ‘vicarious liability’, i.e. liability over the acts of their employees. Also they are more likely to be able to ay and resolve this rather than an individual.

This is your basic legal position. I have more detailed advice for you in terms of the steps you can take to take this further if you want to seek compensation, which I wish to discuss so please take a second to leave a positive rating for the service so far (by selecting 3, 4 or 5 stars) and I can continue with that and answer any further questions you may have. Don’t worry, there is no extra cost and leaving a rating will not close the question and we can continue this discussion. Thank you

Customer: replied 10 months ago.
Thank you for your response,
The company concerned, are now offering £50, without even asking the value of the item. This is not just the issue, since your response, I have contacted their office, and have now been told they do have liability insurance. However if there is any other damage they are saying they will not pay because I should have home insurance. This was not told to us when they took this contract ( worth thousands of pounds a week ).
This surly is not right. If you damage something, or your employees damage
Something in my home it must be paid for!
Can I ask for a copy of there insurance details?
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 10 months ago.

Home insurance can be there as an extra peace of mind, but their liability insurance should cover this in the first place. You may indeed ask for details of their insurers but they do not have to give those to you. If they fail to do so then it does not prevent you from claiming directly against the employer. As mentioned I can discuss the steps to do so with you if needed, if you could please kindly leave your rating for the initial response that would be great, thanks

Ben Jones and other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
According to this company, accidental damage for my property and it's contents is my responsibility, even though they are there for my son ( 21 years old, ) not me, break an item in my living room not his room.
We have over looked a lot of damage this last year.
I am worried that if I accept the £50 good will gesture as a "full and final offer", if there is any damage in the future no-one will even entertain the idea of paying for any damages.
Is it best to refuse this offer?
They have been very careful with their words. Are the words full and final offer, law binding?
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 10 months ago.

yes a full and final offer can be binding for any existing claims. However, it does not cover any future issues o claims that may arise. So if you o accept such an offer it would only be in respect of any open disputes you have with them now, but anything in the future wold not be covered by this.

As to taking this further if you have to, whenever a dispute arises over compensation owed by one party to another, the party at fault can be pursued through the civil courts. As legal action should always be seen as a last resort, there are certain actions that should be taken initially to try and resolve this matter informally and without having to involve the courts. It is recommended that the process follows these steps:

1. Reminder letter – if no reminders have been sent yet, one should be sent first to allow the party at fault to voluntarily settle this matter.

2. Letter before action – if informal reminders have been sent but these have been ignored, the party at fault must be sent a formal letter asking them to resolve this amicably within a specified period of time. A reasonable period to demand a response by would be 10 days. They should be advised that if they fail to do contact you in order to resolve this matter, formal legal proceedings will be commenced to pursue the compensation due. This letter serves as a ‘final warning’ and gives the other side the opportunity to resolve this matter without the need for legal action.

3. If they fail to pay or at least make contact to try and resolve this, formal legal proceedings can be initiated. A claim can be commenced online by going to www.moneyclaim.gov.uk. Once the claim form is completed it will be sent to the other side and they will have a limited time to defend it. If they are aware legal proceedings have commenced it could also prompt them to reconsider their position and perhaps force them to contact you to try and resolve this.

Whatever correspondence is sent, it is always advisable to keep copies and use recorded delivery so that there is proof of delivery and a paper trail. The court may need to refer to these if it gets that far.

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